ROME – Opposition protests on Republic Day

Hundreds of protesters took to the streets of Rome in an anti-government protest organised by the right-wing Lega, the far-right Fratelli d’Italia and the centre-right Forza Italia on Republic Day yesterday (2 June), for the first time since Italians celebrated the birth of the Italian Republic in 1946. Protesters defied social distancing rules marching next to each other.

The rally took place as Head of State Sergio Mattarella visited Codogno, a small town in Lombardy, home to the country’s first coronavirus patient and symbol of the emergency which has claimed about 33,500 victims in Italy.

“Today we celebrate what holds our country together: its moral strength. From here is where we want to start again,” Mattarella said.

Later in the day, another protest occurred in Rome, organised by a right-wing-populist movement calling itself the ‘orange jackets’ because of its uniforms.

The movement, led by former army general Antonio Pappalardo, argued that the coronavirus is not as dangerous as scientists and officials say. (Valentina Iorio | 

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